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Issac Austin Henderson

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Born at Brooklyn, 1850; died in Rome, March, 1909. His family was of Scotch and Irish extraction and had lived for many generations in America. After an early education in private schools and under tutors, he graduated from Williams College with the degrees of Bachelor and Master of Arts, and Doctor of Civil Law. In 1872 he became connected with the New York "Evening Post", which his father owned in partnership with William Cullen Bryant and John Bigelow, became assistant publisher in 1875, and from 1877 was publisher, stockholder, and member of the Board of Trustees. He was a member of the Union League, University, and Mendelssohn Glee Clubs, all of New York. Selling his interest in the New York "Evening Post" in 1881, he went to Europe and lived in London and Rome. In 1886 Mr. Henderson published his first novel, "The Prelate ", while still a Protestant, and followed it two years later with "Agatha Page". The latter, soon (1892) dramatized as "The Silent Battle ", was produced by Sir Charles Wyndham at the Criterion Theatre, London, another dramatic version, entitled "Agatha", being produced the same year at the Boston Museum. His second drama, "The Mummy and the Humming Bird ", was presented at Wyndham's Theatre, 1901, the principal male part being again taken by Wyndham. In 1902 it was played at the Empire Theatre, New York. In 1896 he became a Catholic, adopting the name of Austin at his Confirmation. In 1903 he was appointed private chamberlain to Pope Pius X. In early life he had been a prime promoter of "The New York Evening Post's Fresh Air Fund for Children"; as an ardent Catholic, his chief work was among the poor lads of the Trastevere quarter in Rome, to whom he gave a playground and a well-equipped rainy-day playroom, having kept up always his keen interest in manly sports. Mr. Henderson was a man of varied literary ability, and of versatile talents; he was a keen theologian, had an exquisite sense of humour, was a musician, and gifted with a fine tenor voice.

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